This video starts out with a short interview between Kari and Linda and they talk about some of their philosophies. Then it moves into a 7 minute warm up, followed by 3 10-minute low-impact floor aerobic routines. The cool down is 4 minutes followed by a nice 7-minute stretch. I have switched from higher impact floor and step aerobics recently to lower impact aerobics due to my pregnancy. I just get too tired when I do high impact, even though it is early in the pregnancy. Anyway, this is an excellent video because it is totally not intimidating. That's because there are several overweight exercisers that seem so motivated to get into shape and Linda of course has a beautiful figure and is so down to earth.
The moves in this video are fairly basic and they get a little repetitive for someone who has done more complex moves, but I still enjoyed the tape because I was able to modifiy my arm movements to make the moves higher intensity. Kari and another exerciser do the highest intensity, Linda does the next lower level and then there are two other people you can watch who either do just the leg movements are only a few of the arm movements.
One thing I don't like about the tape is the very short stretch at the beginning, as they only stretch their calf muscles. I wish this was a little longer.
I will use this tape throughout my pregnancy and afterwards. I really worked up a sweat when I did the tape but never got out of breath. I highly recommend this tape for a beginner exerciser and I think this will be a good tape for me to do with my family (Sometimes I lead an exercise session when I go home) because there are several levels to exercise at.
The setting is beatiful and the music is wonderful and overall, I'm glad to have this tape in my collection.
I haven't tried very many of Kari's videos because I don't enjoy high-impact floor aerobics and complex moves. But her cueing in this video was excellent and she really seems to have a good time with all the women she was instructing.
This tape has a forest setting, lots of trees in the background and also has some very interesting music, none like any other video I have experienced. Its good music. There are about 10 exercisers including Kari and Linda who show you modifications of the routines for beginners through advanced and more high intensity moves. There are 3 10 minute aerobic segments. You can progress
through the 3 segments and do 1 daily or do all three for an approx. 40 minute workout inlcuding warmup and cool down. Overall, I don't normally like to do floor aerobics and that's why I like "step" the most, but this is a "keeper" video as far as I am concerned and I rate it a B+, plus I would say its for all fitness levels but for the most part I'd say a beginner tape.
Instructor comments: Kari Anderson is as usual is a very encouraging instructor. Linda Evans along with her is not intimidating and offers
words of encouragement that keep you going throughout the workout.
This is a terrific tape for the beginner
or intermediate, and it's one I really
enjoy (and I'm at the "flabby intermediate"
level). My guess is that Linda Evans - who
looks pretty darn good for someone I
remember from the 60s and "Beach Blanket
Bingo!" - got some good ideas from Elle
MacPherson's video with Karen Voight: namely,
find a nice setting (here, a national
forest, very green and serene); use some
really good music (here, Yanni - yep, I
don't like new age music that much either,
but here, it really sounds, and works, GOOD!); and most of all, find a great fitness
professional and leave the instructing to
her. And Kari Anderson is just impeccable, leading this group of 6 (I think) women through a workout that can be made as easy, or as challenging, as they might want. Aside from the warmup (more on that in a second) and the cooldown stretch (very relaxing), it consists of 3 10-minute segments, so that the entire workout is almost 49 minutes long, but can be shortened to just one segment or two, plus warmup and cooldown. The moves, while simple to follow, are not just basic marching in place, kicking, or trying to bop along to music - Kari's got a definite agenda here, and that is that you use some muscles while doing these moves! Her instruction is always pointing this out - e.g., even in a basic step together, she has you almost doing a squat (and in one modification of the move, you ARE doing a squat!) Throughout, this attention to muscle toning is shown, so that in doing the whole tape, an exerciser would also be doing alot of squats, lunges, abduction, etc.
Now, about that warmup! There are two things I don't like about this tape. The first can be avoided, and some might even like it - that's the little talk Linda Evans gives after the workout, about being good to yourself, yadda yadda yadda. The other part, though is about the first 2 minutes of the workout - they simply don't work! While Kari begins with good moves, and again, great cuing, the moves don't jibe with the beat of the music, and the editing seems a bit off - which means that for the first few minutes, you're likely to feel like you just can't catch the beat. Ignore that - just go with your own beat (at least that's what I've done!) until about 2 minutes in - and then enjoy the rest! A really good tape for a beginner to grow with - and for an intermediate to get a non-strenous, easier but effective workout.
Instructor comments: Even though this video has Linda Evans'
name on it, make no mistake, it's a Kari
Anderson video, and she's superb! Excellent
cuing, careful breaking down of each move,
options given always for increasing or
decreasing activity, and a wonderful
enthusiasm that just makes you want to
The setting for this video was good, it was serene but sunny--kind of like Linda Evans-ish. The tape is broken up into three parts, each getting more difficult. I agree that this tape's routines can get reptetious, but I think that it is in a good way. The cast shows many ways to do a simple step, and there are all different body types to look at, so that no one feels left out. I used Linda herself as my guide, I am a bit voluptuous myself, and as she looks great at her age, I am using her, for the role model. Her breathy speaches at the beginning and at the end are annoying, but that is what the ff button is for. Yanni's music works surprisingly well witht this workout, which I would reccomend to any exerciser. If you are advanced--this is a good video to relax with.
Instructor comments: Kari Anderson is, as usual, a great instructor, and this video is living proof. Her cueing and instruction is easy for every exerciser to understand, and she makes the workout accessible to all.
I bought this tape for my pregnancy and post-partum and it worked great for that. I will keep it in my collection in case I get out of shape for any reason and need a low-impact tape. I like the format: three 10 minute aerobic sections. That way you can do as much as you have time for or if you get wiped out you can stop. This is a great tape for beginners because Kari is great and Linda is enjoyable to watch in the video. The music is WONDERFUL and the outdoor setting adds a lot of class to the video. Good job Linda and Kari! Rating: A-
Instructor comments: I don't have very many tapes by Kari and I think I will try some more because I like her style and cueing is always on. She's seems like a real pro and very likeable.
Lucky me. This was a freebie. (oops, no pun intended.) I got this at the Nordic Track store during a special promotion.
The very first thing to do when you see a celebrity's face on the video is to check out the instructor. Kari Anderson is a proven leader in exercise videos. The video is beautiful: redwood forest, Yanni's music, great camera shots of real-life exercisers of various ages, shapes, and fitness levels. It starts with Linda giving a pep talk. Some viewers may be bored by this, some may not. Fast foward if you wish or stay tuned and listen because She looks great for someone in her 50s. Also Linda is actually rather big boned which I didn't realize until I saw her with the other women.
She introduces Kari Anderson, who as usual, tells you the outline of the video. There is a warmup, three 10 minute aerobic sections, a
cool down and closing message from Linda Evans.
The modifications range from easy demonstrated by Valerie to the left to advanced demonstrated by Kari and Elbee, the exerciser behind Kari who is probably the oldest one on the video. That alone is encouragement. Kari and Linda have some scripted banter but Kari mentions some video outtakes. (hmmmm, call Dick Clark!) Kari also has great rapport with her class and occasionally moves among them to check form and highlight various modification choices without missing a cue. As always, Kari tells you to focus on using "mental concentration" as the muscle moves and contracts and to notice how the body feels when moving.
This is an excellent video for absolute beginners. It's easy and there's plenty of encouragement and modifications. Intermediates may want this for a light workout day. Advanced exercisers may find it a waste of time. It's also a good one to have for recovery from a heavy weight day or when feeling blah. I didn't buy it because of it's rating even though I like Kari Anderson work and style of teaching. It's not going to the exchange. It's going to my mom who wants a video she can do. I think she'll like it.
Instructor comments: She's the best mover on video and probably one of the top five or ten on video. She never forgets her dancer's training and always share it with her video class and viewers. Easy going and sincere personality, upbeat and personable.
Jean Leslie Wakefield
This video is fun to do, and just as beautiful to watch. The moment I put this one in, and see that lush forest, the temperature seems to drop 10 degrees! I consider myself a high intermediate, and find this tape very easy, but I really enjoy it. My mother in law also enjoys this video and thinks Anderson cues better than the other beginner levels videos she has seen, but feels this one is the most challenging she's done (even though she has said it doesn't feel as hard because Kari instructs so well). I haven't read a review of it, but someone usually does a very thorough breakdown of the workout, so I'll skip that. I will say I like the fact that there are so many options for arms, impact and range of movement. Any exerciser from beginners to intermediates can find something appropriate. I like the fact that it is modular, so you can do one section if you're tired or pressed for time. And the strecth is great, as all of Kari's stretch segments are. The cast really looks like they are having fun, except the woman who keeps her hands on her hips. She has the exact same expression throughout the whole class! That just doesn't seem natural to me, in fact, it looks phony and as though she forcing the expression and not really having fun at all. I did like it that Kari did the most challenging moves with the woman who appeared older than everyone else (that's motivating!). And the cast was very real looking. This is an appealing work out for beginners to intermediates. Very accesible and attractive. If you like Kari, and are more advanced, and don't mind not being particularly challenged, you'll probably still like this one with its striking setting and lovely music.
Instructor comments: Kari is one of the best. She's friendly and personable, cues impeccably and moves beautifully. In this one, she also is very motivating and breaks things down even better than usual. Linda Evans is also pleasant. She seems very serene and is encouraging. Also, between the two of them, this is a no-pressure work out. Kari offers modifications aplenty, both encourage to do what you can and find your comfort level, and Linda makes a few comments to not worry about getting every step, and she's probably made the mistakes already. Very accesible instruction from a thoroughly enjoyable, professional instructor.
I bought this video because of the rave reviews in Collage Video and on the videoexchange.com.
I hated doing the video. I felt as if I were being talked down to, and the routines were excruciatingly dull.
I'm an intermediate exerciser, and I prefer low-impact workouts. But this one didn't give me a good workout. For a good low-impact workout, I suggest Charlene Prickett's videos (if you tire of her chat, just lower the volume!).
I traded "The New You" as soon as possible.
I know that this video is a favorite here but I'm going to have to pan it, at least for beginners who are starting at the sedentary level because of the way the designated beginner, Valerie is used.
The other reviewers summarize this video's positives well. Briefly these are:
- Kari's clear cueing and excellent instruction
- the gorgeous setting in a forest
- the music (and I'm not a Yanni fan but it works here)
- the video is segemented into 3- 10 minute workouts
- the interplay between Kari and Linda who look like they are enjoying themselves.
The biggest problem I have with this video is the way Valerie (who's doing the most basic moves) is used. Frankly, what she is doing is so boring that no beginner is going to want to do it. (My mom who's over 70, said "there's no way, I was going to do what she was doing".) The moves the other exercisers are doing are much more interesting. (Some previous reviewers have commented on Valerie's fixed smile...frankly I think she wasn't enjoying herself when everyone else got the fun stuff.) I've seen other videos with a basic level exerciser (Kathy Smith's videos often use one) but I've never seen it look so unappealing compared to the higher level exercisers. In my case, I began following Linda and ended up following Kari. For me, this was exercising at too high a level and had to stop near the end with knee pain.
It turned out I have iliotibial band syndrome (which I was probably developing anyway from not stretching enough and because I have tight muscles naturally) but all the lateral moves and overtraining in this video did not help. I don't know how unique my experience is but I would urge beginners who've been sedentary to use caution and not go too high a level when using this video.
Instructor comments: Kari has excellent cuing and explains the moves well. She's quite likeable.
When I got this tape about a month ago, I was a total newbie, so I
followed Valerie. Once I had the routine figured out, I started
following the next level up, or whoever was in the middle of the frame
at a given moment (more on that later). I have never finished the tape;
I always quit after the second segment out of sheer boredom. I tried to
give it another chance today, thinking it might be more fun if I
followed Kari, but the plodding music in the warm-up drove me to put in
Kathy Smith's Fat Burning WO instead. Problems I have with this tape: I
found the four levels of intensity confusing, especially when Kari was
cueing and I would instinctively follow her instead of whoever I was
trying to follow. It seemed like everybody was doing something
different. It hits me as slow-paced and dull. I like drums, I like
forests, but I guess they just don't make me want to work out. On the
upside, I can go out after doing this tape without showering first.